Valentine's Day is right around the corner, and of course, I nearly forgot about it!
If you're the same and looking for last-minute gift ideas - or just for some creative ways to pass the day - I've got you covered.
If you're NOT like me and already have your gift (or several gifts if you exchange among friends) then:
- Kudos to you! :)
- I at least have a pretty little set of free printable gift tags for you. Read on!
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Do you celebrate Valentine's Day?
If yes, where are you from?
I guess it's because I grew up in Switzerland, where Valentine's Day didn't have the same significance as in other parts of the world, that I stayed immune to it for the longest time.
Flash forward to me living in Korea and I just can't ignore Valentine's Day!
Here, it's HEAVILY focused on chocolate gifts. Girls give (super adorable) chocolates to their crushes, often as a form of confession. In recent years, it's shifted more towards exchanging gifts among couples and romantic dates.
Cute little sprinkle of knowledge:
Korea actually celebrates not only the 14th of February, when women gift chocolates to men, but also the 14th of the following months!
March 14th: White Day, when all the men who received chocolates on Valentine's Day return the favor. White chocolate is extremely popular. Go, marketing!
April 14th: Black Day. Not exactly festive (and not marketed like the two others), but it's a day for singles that didn't receive any chocolates to eat black Jjajangmyeon noodles. ;)
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Valentine's Day and White Day are both huge in Korea.
I usually just crave colors and spring by this time so all the adorable gifts, decor, events, and of course chocolates, make me happy. Inspired by the pastel hues and floral decor, I created my own stationery for Valentine's Day and spring.
Since these are printable files you can download and print them instantly! Perfect if you're in a hurry and still need a card with your gift or a pretty gift tag as decoration.
Hand-Drawn Watercolor Greeting Card: Romantic and Elegant
If you're looking for watercolor Valentine's Day greeting cards, I painted these floral motive ones and turned them into printable files.
Botanical illustrations always remind me of vintage stationery and romantic Regency-era books, so these flower paintings were the perfect fit for a set of Valentine's cards!
Since the cards are meant to be folded (leaving room inside for a personal message or letter) I wanted to decorate the back, too!
The first motive comes with a small violet flower painting on the back of the card.
To make the card more personal, you can request a custom message to replace the "Happy Valentine's Day" script.
The second card starts with the famous "Roses are Red, Violets are Blue" lines in watercolor calligraphy - you then can continue the message inside the card. There are hundreds of versions of the poem or you might come up with a creative idea of your own!
Of course, to fit the poem, I added a watercolor rose to the back of the card.
An artsy gift for creative people: Create your own card!
Did you create Valentine's Cards for friends when you were a child? We had a roses & cards exchange at our school!
If you're feeling nostalgic and creative, I've got some DIY Valentine's ideas for you!
1. Brush Calligraphy
There are lots of free resources and reference materials so that you can create your custom message. You can use water tank brush with diluted color or just a normal brush. For calligraphy, the quality of both watercolors and paper aren't a big issue, so this is perfect for anyone who doesn't hoard art supplies (*cough*).
If you'd like a bit more help with your hand-lettering experiments:
The art & DIY tutorials on Skillshare are much more in-depth and explain steps that most YouTube videos just don't have the time for.
This is a great video for absolute beginners to brush lettering!
2. Watercolor Galaxy Greeting Card
Space is romantic!
Seriously. What could be more romantic than being made from stardust?
If you feel up for a little creative challenge: Paint a watercolor galaxy! Combined with some of my favorite "romantic space" messages, these make for unique artsy Valentine's Cards.
For inspiration, here are some of my favorite space-inspired messages and cards.
You are the Moon of my Life | You are the Moon and all of my Stars | I love you to the Moon and Back
My favorite tutorial for beginners - the artist uses cheap watercolors and shows different techniques you can follow along!
Since watercolor galaxy paintings use more water than hand-lettering, you'll need sturdier paper and maybe some artist tape to make sure the card stays flat! But once you get over the fear of making mistakes (you can always hide those by painting over them with a dark color - most of our universe is black, after all) these are so much fun to make.
If you'd like more guidance and step by step instructions I'd recommend this series of videos. The set-up is just like mine when I paint galaxies - including the phone picture for reference!
Skillshare does have a monthly subscription fee, but you can get a completely free trial month with access to all their premium membership content via my affiliate link if you'd like to try your hand at some creative projects - with over 18'000 videos, they cover every interest one could possibly have!
Not feeling artsy today? I made not one but two printable galaxy art cards that you can choose from. Print, cut, fold, and you're done! Which one is your favorite?
3. If you can't paint for the life of you: Coloring cards are your savior!
Grab a couple of colored pencils and color away!
I've got some for you in my freebie collection but you can find more Valentine's Day themed ones in my Etsy shop.
4. Seriously, no artsy drop of blood in your veins? ;)
Hand-written letters always make me happy.
I exchange them with my family back in Switzerland and love creating my own letter paper! Check out my freebie section for a watercolor crystal pattern or click on one of the two below for a floral theme.
Decorate your letters with some Valentine's Day themed stickers and you're good to go!
You can make your own envelopes, too - a really simple DIY project that doesn't require you to hold a pen or brush.
Follow me on Pinterest if you're into creative projects of any kind! I pin a lot - you might find the DIY board handy when you wrap your Valentine's gifts, too!
5. Really. No paper. You've got two left hands.
Remember how popular a gift adorable chocolates are here in Korea?
It's seen as extra romantic if the chocolates are handmade!
Often, that just involves melting the chocolate and molding it into cute shapes. I'm ready to make my own (...with the excuse of making these for my husband) and can't wait to see how they turn out! It sounds simple enough, doesn't it?
- I'll use dark chocolate to make heart shaped simple ones.
- This (vegan!) fudge recipe is on my to-do list - still need to buy frozen strawberries. How pretty is that soft pink color? No baking required!
What will you be doing on Valentine's Day?
I'll be eating all the homemade chocolate and pamper myself with a face mask (or two).
Hopefully, I was able to give you some ideas for adding personal, creative touches to your Valentine's Day gifts even if you're not particularly artsy in daily life.
Tell me if you use any of my stationery - I always love to see them in use <3